Self worth over net worth

(Unsplash: Annie Spratt)

I used to believe that if I were to make a certain amount of money and obtain a certain type of lifestyle I would not only feel better about myself, but I would actually arrive at the pinnacle of success.

The problem?

My definition of what it meant to be successful was skewed and my perception of self worth was based on my net worth.

The world likes to paint a picture that success is equal to money. The more you have and the sooner you have it the more successful you are and the more value you have in this world.

“I felt a sense of urgency and worthlessness”

I as a 24 year old I have not yet started a successful company and sold it off for millions. Because everyone else is doing it right? I felt worthless and insignificant because I have not yet attained the stature which I thought I should have already attained at 24 because I was looking to the wrong crowd in measuring my success.

Everyone else was not doing it. I was just looking at the handful of people who actually did it and compared myself to them. Making myself feel bad because what I perceived to be the ultimate goal of ‘success’ was in fact a result of hard work and dedication.

We are bombarded with advertisements and pictures of people who made millions. Swimming in their money on a yacht somewhere off the coast of the caribbean islands pretending that they don’t have a care in the world. All is well in the land of the rich they say.

People on social media pretending to be something that they are not and yet advocating “authentic life”.

We fall trap to societal lies and regardless of where you live in the world there is a sense that “The American dream” is attainable and that your answers can be solved by achieving it.

I love this saying from Will Smith “Money and success won’t change people. They merely amplify what is already there.

The truth is that if we measure ourselves by the false standards of culture and society through comparison, you will always feel like you are not good enough and way behind everyone else. You would always have a new level of success to achieve to match up to those who have already achieved it. A new level of lifestyle to obtain. Or more material possessions to acquire.

“Money will not make you more valuable, but only reveal more of the person that you already are”

In the end, sacrificing your health and relationships to obtain a form of success and money is not worth it. Real wealth comes in the form of the contentment of the life that you live. One where you wake up and embrace the challenges that you face, give generously and enjoy the process of what you are working towards. Where you get creative to solve problems and have family and friends that supports you every step of the way.

So realize this. Your self worth is not equal to your net worth. Your successes in life are results that come with what you do, they should not be why you do it.

You are enough as you are, with what you have with where you are now in life at this very moment. And know that you are created to be very good.



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André Nel

I am a freelance writer with a passion for life, with a focus to teach people how to increase the quality of their lives and help grow leaders.